3D-printed solid-state batteries near production

Batteries that are lighter, cheaper and easier to produce could result from a convergence of modern approaches, writes Freddie Holmes

A company that plans to produce 3D-printed solid-state batteries is readying to launch its first pilot line. California-based Sakuu is targeting not only electric vehicles (EVs) but also other sectors such as aerospace, consumer electronics and medical devices. The new battery line is expected to be operational by the end of 2021 and will have a capacity of up to 2.5 megawatt hours (MWh) per year.

Once up and running, the plan is to begin issuing batteries to strategic customers and ‘early access partners’ who can perform their own development and testing. One other solid-state battery start-up QuantumScape recently ran a similar initiative, where its pouch cells were issued to third parties. The results were presented in December alongside its joint venture partner, Volkswagen Group.

Sakuu will work alongside manufacturing firm Relevant Industrial and Honeywell Process Solutions to develop the pilot line, with a second phase of expansion planned for 2022. The company's Chief Technology Officer, Karl Littau, told Automotive World that products using Sakuu’s battery technology could be in use by “late 2022 or early 2023” but could not specify whether these would be EVs or another application.

Sakuu 3D printed battery cell
Sakuu says its proprietary additive manufacturing process is cheaper, easier and more sustainable than typical approaches

Even as lithium-ion batteries begin

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